Naspers Ventures, a VC arm of Naspers, the 1915 founded media giant has led a $15 million Series B investment in US-social learning platform Brainly and set up an office in San Francisco to tap into U.S. technology companies for strong global growth.
The $65B global group with operations in more than 130 countries is entering the edtech space for the firm time after doing classifieds, entertainment, ecommerce media for over a century.
“Naspers is consistently looking to invest in the leaders in markets that have global scale and the potential to be transformed by technology. The sizeable education market is a perfect fit,” said Bob van Dijk, CEO of Naspers.
Bob took over from Koos Bekker who stood down from the Naspers board for a year, to allow Bob the space to settle in with both Naspers top management and the board. Koos then went on a sabbattical to research where the group’s next spurt of growth may come from, once ecommerce has reached maturity. So probably Brainly was scouted by Bekker.
The investment from Naspers will see Brainly accelerate its global expansion and double down on its US market as well.
As an investor and operator, Naspers provides its founders and companies with unmatched levels of support internationally, including strong business strategy expertise, operating experience and access to on-the-ground resources in key expansion markets. OLX is a good case study of this.
The firm is now looking for untapped markets and segments such as EdTech with significant global potential will continue the company’s growth.
Naspers Ventures CEO Larry Illg. “We are looking for companies and leaders with high potential and the ambition to have significant global impact. Education is a sizeable market that has not yet seen the technology impacts we have seen in other sectors, but we are now seeing dramatic innovations appearing. That makes EdTech a perfect fit for Naspers Ventures.”
In the Naspers is looking to the U.S. market as an additional source for innovative platforms with global growth potential, given its prime track record for technology innovation. Many early technology companies that are starting up in North America have potential far beyond the U.S. and Naspers can accelerate the path from innovator to global leader. The investment in Brainly showcases this strategy. Naspers presence in San Francisco brings it closer to tomorrow’s global leaders.
Michal Borkowski, CEO of Brainly said he’s convinced the partnership with Naspers will allow Brainly to accelerate their exciting growth globally, and double down on its focus in the United States.